Category: Bill Hybels

Why Am I So Passionate About Being A Watchman?

I received a phone call earlier this week from a listener asking me if I could take a few minutes and give the “big picture” of what I am seeing in our nation and the warning message I am trying to deliver.  So here goes:

America, founded on Judeo-Christian law and principles, has abandoned that foundation over the past 50 years.  God has been kicked out of our schools and government; we have murdered more than 60 million babies in the womb; we have redefined marriage; and we have told God that He is flawed in how He created us—that just because he created us male or female that he had no right to do that since we should be able to choose ourselves the gender we prefer.

America has gone from a Christian nation to an “Anti-Christ nation”.  And while we should use our freedom of speech and religious expression, along with our voting power, to try to reverse the slide of this once-great nation, we must accept the inevitability of what the Bible forecasts:  That one day soon every nation will turn on Israel and against God in defiance.  There is no “USA” exclusion in the Word of God…

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Comments Discussed, Questions Answered!

No topic is off limits. Every Friday, we tackle tough questions and challenges that believers are going through. Here are some of this week’s comments:

How do we determine the difference between a person/church leader being wrong, embracing heresy, or an apostate?
The church we attend has no youth group and our pastor said we could start one at home. We’re having a hard time finding a new church that teaches the hows and whys along with sound doctrine. Advice?
The sad abortion law passed in New York is a testimony to the evil that has gripped America. When the church cowers for fear of public opinion or government, it ceases to be a church and becomes a lapdog for immorality.
Have you noticed a shift in Christian music from pointing to God to being more catchy and entertaining, from vertical worship to horizontal “worship”?
What is the best way to leave a church – quietly or letting people know why you decided to leave?

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Questions and Comments from Listeners

Rather than list many of the questions and comments this week, let’s sum them up this way:

Comments and questions discussed on today’s podcast include an overwhelming response to the current Willow Creek Church/Bill Hybels scandal. Over all listeners who sent in questions or comments on the issue, over 90% are opposed to the Willow Creek Association and Global Leadership Summit, and many have addressed their concerns with their pastor.

Some have already left their churches if it continued to be a part of the Willow Creek Association, while others plan to ask their pastor about it to see how they justify partnering with an organization having so many unbiblical approaches and teachings. In our experience, when confronted about WC, most church leaders double down and refuse to acknowledge the problems.

A few listeners mentioned politics and the fiasco the Senate hearings have become regarding Supreme Court nominee, Bret Kavanaugh. Someone also brought up the difference between being a Christian and a conservative which are often used interchangeably. 

Another Christian couple wants to know how to strike a healthy, biblical balance in the home as campaign season is already upon us. One spouse is more active politically wanting to be salt and light in culture and the other just wants to pray and vote as God leads without getting immersed or frustrated with the political process.

The others we had time for today mentioned the importance of believers knowing and appreciating the Old Testament. Also, a new believer who asked about the parable of the Sower in Mark chapter 4 and does it refute the “once saved always saved” doctrine. 

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Comments Discussed, Questions Answered

Today we answer the questions and read the comments from you our listeners. We discuss the sexual abuse scandal in the Roman Catholic Church, the crisis at Willow Creek, and what does unity in the body of Christ really look like?

Here are the topics our listeners want to cover today:

Are you concerned about Hillsong and others that put out some decent music but have some very questionable theological statements and positions.

Where do you draw the line between worship and entertainment. Even Christian music and the church has been compromised lyrically. Is this a result of record labels in Nashville and also wanting to be like the world?

Why do most Catholics seem more loyal to that Church than they do the Word of God?

Is seems the sexual abuse scandal in the Catholic Church is already quite vast as is the cover-up by church leaders, but since over 80% of young abuse victims are boys, the systemic problem seems to be homosexuality. Because of this, the media will not report the whole truth so do you think there will be true repentance and change in the RCC?

My friend thinks you guys are dividing the church instead of uniting Christians over issues of morality and doctrine. I think you guys have said it is wrong to elevate unity as more important than doctrine and truth.

Thank you for the show about public school teaching evolution as fact and how to equip our children with truth, Scripture, and science that affirms Scripture.

What are issues to divide or break fellowship over (within the Christian church) and which are ones we can respectfully agree to disagree on?

When we question the faith of fellow believers, aren’t we judging them? Doesn’t the Bible tell us not to judge?

You can connect with us a couple ways: email your questions and comments to comments@standupforthetruth.com; or text the key word “speak up” to 90100.

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Listener Comments & Questions

Here are some of today’s Listener questions/comments:

How long will we in America elevate man’s teachings over God’s Word?
Those who don’t know Scripture well end up following people like Andy Stanley
Are some pastors really keeping their followers ignorant of deeper things of God’s word?
My husband and I are struggling with our church of 11 years whose leadership is committed to Bill Hybels and the Willow Creek Assoc. We’re divided on whether or not to leave. Any advice?
Catholics are hurting over the priests sexually abusing children, and many are hurting. This may be an opportunity to reach them with the true gospel.
The Roman Catholic Church’s extensive history of abuse, coverup, and hypocrisy.
Does social media play into anorexia and bulimia?
It is idiotic to want plastic surgery in order to look better in your selfies. What causes this warped thought process?
Can you explain the difference between a fornicator and an adulterer, in other words is lusting in the heart truly considered adultery?
There is a huge difference between “bashing the church” and confronting and exposing error.
Can you clarify Paul’s teaching in Romans 13 about submitting to governing authorities?
For those who say division is always wrong, how about the Reformation?
I’m a former Catholic and used to trust the church (institution) over God’s Word. Any advice on how to engage Catholics in discussions about Scripture and true doctrine?

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QUESTIONS: Spiritual Gifts, Obstructing Trump, Gender Confusion, Social Justice, more!

So many comments and questions and comments and so little time! Every Friday, we talk about what our listeners want to talk about – and we love it. It’s great to know what’s on your heart. We do our best to discern truth from error and apply the wisdom available to us from God to current events and cultural debates. Here are some of the topics you want to discuss this week:

Church discipline, globalism, social justice
How far will the left go to obstruct Trump and his Supreme Court nomination?
Is God still sparing America to a degree?
Are Catholics who claim to be pro-life and vote Democrat being hypocritical?
Normalizing transgender individuals, gender confusion
How can new believers grow up and mature in the grace and knowledge of Christ?
Has liberalism become mainstream in many churches?
What caused regional church division in 2010 when Jim Wallis spoke at Lifest on the main stage?
Is there one deception you think is the most dangerous?

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Friday is Listener Comments & Questions Day

When we first come to saving faith in Jesus Christ we are on fire but still immature in the Christian faith. With the myriad of Christian teaching and television out there ranging from excellent all the way down to flat out heresy, how do we help new believers understand the difference between biblical truth and human error and deception? What should we say to a new believer who really enjoys listening to Joel Osteen for example?

This is one of your questions we will cover today. Other topics you want to discuss include:

The resignation and legacy of Pastor Bill Hybels of Willow Creek Church

The “13 reasons Why” documentary of teen suicide.

Mysticism and emergent theology creeping into churches.

Is the Pope right about atheists going to heaven if they have their children baptized?

Were the Founding Fathers just godless bigots and slave owners?

The Christian struggle with occasional sin and hypocrisy.

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The “New Reality” of Christian Leadership

The Bible clearly warns us that as we approach the time of the Lord’s return that things would get worse and worse. Sin and evil will grow and the attacks on God, His Word and His Church would be magnified.

We had better understand this new reality.

Christianity was once the norm in our society; now it is becoming increasingly hated, scorned and attacked.

In our final segment this morning we look at public allegations against Pastor Bill Hybels of Willow Creek Church, alleging sexual misconduct and improprieties. Are the charges warranted or fabricated to further disgrace the Christian Church in America?

But first we talk with author and Christian Apologist John Stewart about his latest book “In Defense of the Gospels: The Case for Reliability”. How can we defend the authenticity and truth of the gospel against the growing chorus of attacks, reaching the lost with the hope of eternal life with God?

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Willow Creek Pastor Bill Hybels to Retire; Names Successor

Founding and Senior Pastor Bill Hybels has announced his retirement effective October, 2018. He will remain as “founding pastor” and oversee the expansion of Willow Creek’s Association that provides services and resources to churches and also the Willow Creek Leadership Summit.

Hybels and Willow Creek are no strangers to controversy. The WC Leadership Summit has elevated people like Bill Clinton, Rob Bell and several corporation executives as “leaders to emulate” even though many of them are not even Christians and support homosexual marriage and abortion. Some people believe this is incorporating the ways of the world into the church.

His wife Lynne openly opposes the nation of Israel through “Christ at the Checkpoint,” criticizing Israel while giving a pass to the terrorist organizations who kill in the name of Allah. In typical controversial fashion, Hybels is going out with a bang: he has named Heather Larsen his successor to the lead pastor position having the title of Executive Pastor.

Many of you have weighed in on this so we discuss it in the first segment today and then get to more listener questions and comments.

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A Crisis of Leadership

No, we are not talking about President Trump or Congress; we are talking about the hard-working, dedicated men who heed God’s calling to be a pastor. It’s not surprising that according to recent studies, many of these dedicated men are tired, discouraged and often feel alone.

We have discussed on this show the reality that there are famous mega-church “celebrity” pastors out there who have watered down the true gospel or have adopted the church growth movement teachings of Peter Drucker, Rick Warren, or the Willow Creek Model, and have amassed large churches where their role appears to be more like a CEO whose concern is about nickels and noses. Some of them live an extremely luxurious life which is not wrong in and of itself.

But today we look at the state of the majority: hard-working, dedicated pastors of generally smaller churches, committed to making disciples of Jesus Christ and faithfully teaching the Word. And by most indications they are over-worked, under paid and growing more discouraged as the years go on. What responsibility do we as members of their churches bear in this crisis? And what can we do to come along side them and help?

We’re also joined by Julaine Appling of Wisconsin Family Action to discuss new legislative actions to increase restrictions on abortion, explain the politics and red tape in the U.S. senate, and update us on a Wisconsin transgender law suit where a school in a very liberal district took a surprising stance.

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Mueller, Trump, Christians, and Government

After two years of painstaking investigation and more than $25 million in taxpayer costs, Special Investigator Robert Mueller has concluded that, wait for it… President Trump did not collude with Russians to undermine our election system in 2016.  Talk about a dramatic “thud.” That should be the end to all this, but as we know, it is just going to continue as liberals will spare no taxpayer expense to undermine the president’s reputation and policies because they refuse to accept the truth.Are we seeing similar scenarios unfold within American Christianity?  Despite the Bible’s clear teachings on a variety of “social issues,” a growing number of Christians and churches refuse to accept the truth of God’s Word, choosing to compromise or believe what seems “right” to them.John Loeffler of Steel on Steel Radio joins Mike and David to discuss how opinions are being elevated over facts, in politics, in the media, and even when it comes to doctrine in some Christian churches. We also discuss Canada’s new “Risk Tracking Database” that some feel is a portal to government intervention into private lives and religious beliefs.  How long before this might come to America?

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Pyrite Christianity in America

Pyrite is a mineral made up primarily of iron that looks like gold, thus it’s nickname of “fool’s gold.”  It looks like valuable gold but in reality, it is generally useless and of little to no value.

As America continues celebrating godlessness and too many members of churches fail to look significantly different than the secular culture taking over this nation. A growing number of churches and professing Christians are holding “fool’s gold” thinking it will save them when they stand before Jesus Christ as judge, only to find out what they hold is useless and even abhorrent before our Lord and Savior.

Elijah Abraham is a former Muslim and now born-again believer who travels around the world proclaiming the gospel, teaching pastors, and equipping believers who face constant threats of persecution.  He shares insights about what he has witnessed with believers here in America compared to churches in countries where persecution is often a way of life. Elijah points out the lack of maturity, discipleship, and sound doctrine in too many American churches.

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Francis Chan: Discerning or Guilty by Association?

The Bible is clear that there will be many false teachers leading people astray in the final years, and many professing Christians will be part of this final apostasy.  It also tells us we should avoid anyone who teaches a gospel contrary to the Bible’s teaching.  But Paul also tells us to bear with one another as believers; standing up for truth, but also not allowing insignificant divisions to cause problems.  The problem is that we are not always clear about what is a significant or insignificant division within Christianity.Francis Chan has been on a very interesting journey over the past few years.  He resigned as pastor of the mega-church he founded and went on a personal sabbatical.  He has returned and finds himself in a growing controversy surrounding his criticism of American Christianity as well as his recent appearances at IHOP and alongside Todd White and Benny Hinn. Really?So where does Chan really stand on doctrine? Mike, David, and Crash look at the controversy and discuss the difficulties in being discerning Christians without jumping to conclusions or branding those we disagree with a “heretic” or “apostate.”ARTICLES

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